DENVER — Andrew Susac’s first homer of the season came on his final swing. Not a bad way to head into the winter.
Not a bad for Milwaukee to wrap up the season, either, as the catcher’s two-run drive in the 10th inning lifted the Brewers over the Colorado Rockies 6-4 in the finale Sunday.
“I wanted to do anything to help this team,” said Susac, who was acquired from San Francisco on Aug. 1. “It’s tough to do when you don’t play.”
After Orlando Arcia hustled for a two-out double, Susac followed with a liner to left off Chris Rusin (3-5) as the Rockies bullpen struggled to hold the lead — a recurring trend this season. It was Susac’s first homer since July 12 last year while with the Giants.
Reliever Tyler Thornburg (8-5) won after blowing a lead for a second straight day. Corey Knebel pitched a perfect 10th for his second save, striking out Charlie Blackmon to end the season.
DJ LeMahieu sat out Sunday to protect his lead in the batting title race. It worked as LeMahieu edged Washington’s Daniel Murphy by.3478 to .3465.
“Certainly one of the best story lines of this season, especially when you take into account the guy — the type of guy DJ is and how hard he’s worked to achieve that,” Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. “That’s no small achievement, to win a batting title in this league.”
LeMahieu didn’t really know what to think, mostly because it hadn’t quite sunk in.
“It’s a relief,” LeMahieu said.
There was plenty of intrigue with Milwaukee’s Chris Carter and Colorado’s Nolan Arenado dueling for the NL home run title. Both were kept in the park Sunday and finished tied with 41.
“It would be cool to win by myself. But at the same time, he’s had a great year for himself. He earned it,” said Arenado, who led the league in RBIs with 133. “I’m just happy I had another good year. It’s cool. It’s a cool thing to be a part of.”
Carter hit 24 last season with Houston.
“I feel good to bounce back and have a good year,” said Carter, who posed for photos with Arenado before the game. “I worked hard to more consistent and improve as a hitter.”
Domingo Santana hit a two-run homer in the eighth to give the Brewers a 4-3 lead. It wouldn’t last as Jordan Patterson tied it with a two-out single in the ninth that scored Arenado. Patterson also had a run-scoring double in the fifth — his first two major league RBIs.
The Brewers struck out 12 times to give them a big league record 1,543 for the season, topping Houston’s 1,535 in 2013.
Blackmon led off with a homer — the 10th time he’s done that this year. He also had two doubles and a single in what could be Weiss’ last game with the Rockies. His contract expires at the end of the season and the front office has yet to announce whether they will bring Weiss back.
“That’s never weighed on me, as a player, as a manager,” Weiss said. “I’m always going to show up the same way, no matter what my contract situation is.”
Brewers: OF Ryan Braun was given the day off on the final afternoon of the season. “He’s at 135 games right now, that’s a success,” manager Craig Counsell said.
Rockies: SS Trevor Story (torn ligament in left thumb) said he’s about a month away from being “full go.” He was limited to 97 games, but led all rookies with 27 homers.
Olympians Emma Coburn and Jenny Simpson threw out the first pitch Sunday — while wearing their bronze medals from the Rio de Janeiro Games. Simpson (1,500 meters) and Coburn (steeplechase) crossed things up by throwing to opposite catchers.
THIS & THAT
Brewers infielder Jonathan Villar fell a homer shy of becoming the fourth player in major league history to hit 20 homers and steal 60 bases. He wound up with a league-leading 62 stolen bases. … Milwaukee started reliever Tyler Cravy for two innings and then turned things over to the bullpen.
Milwaukee (73-89) won five more games than a season ago and Colorado (75-87) turned in its best record since 2010.
The Brewers host the Rockies in a four-game series to open the 2017 season.